Atenolol (Molecule of the Month for October 2003)
The main uses of Atenolol are anti-hypertension and against coronary heart disease. Like other anti hypertension drugs Atenolol lowers the systolic and diastolic blood pressure by 15 to 20% in a single drug treatment. In a long-term treatment it has the ability to reduce cardiovascular mortality.
Atenolol has a selective effect on B1-receptors and it can therefore be considered cardioselective. It does not have any intrinsic sympathomimetic effects. Atenolol reduces both maximal and submaximal heart rates and delays atrioventricular contraction. Atenolol can lead to a reduction in peripheral blood flow and to an increase of plasma triglycerides and total cholesterol as well as to reduced high density lipoprotein cholesterol values.
Atenolol reduces myocardial contractility, intravenous administration is permitted in the earliest twenty-four hours of the drug being withdrawn there is however a danger of acute heart failure. The effects of Atenolol on blood pressure are reduced by anti-inflammatory agents.
Formal Chemical Name (IUPAC)
Update by Karl Harrison
(Molecule of the Month for October 2003 )